toronto tinder swindler

Toronto 'Tinder Swindler' allegedly stole $30,000 and there may be more victims

Romance scams are nothing new but true crime shows like Tinder Swindler and Bad Vegan have put grifters in the spotlight lately.

He may not have reached the multi-million dollar scamming levels of Simon Leviev or Anna Delvey, but Toronto's own Tinder Swindler is making a name for himself.

At least five people were scammed, according to police, but there may be more.

Toronto Police first announced on March 2 that a scammer had been using online social media chat groups and dating platforms in the Toronto area to lure people on dates. After chatting online, the man met victims in person, and would eventually go to their homes.

His scam was fairly simple: once out with the date, he simply asked for their phone, claiming he needed to make a call. Then he sent electronic money transfers from the victims' phones to himself, police said.

He also scrubbed credit card data from the phones. Police were "shocked" at how easy it was for the suspect to gain access to credit card and banking information by briefly using the victims' phones, according to CTV News.

The incidents happened between Nov. 19, 2021 and Feb. 23, 2022.

The man didn't use private plane trips or swanky hotels but he managed to swindle a combined total of $30,000, Toronto Police now say.

But that may be the tip of the iceberg.

Toronto Police Services Det. Jason Contant told reporters this week he believes there are more victims, and that the man started scamming well before November of 2021.

"Victims of this type of crime often feel embarrassed and might not want to report it to police," Contant said. "No one should be made to feel like that and it is our job to investigate and find those responsible."

Even worse, it appears the man was targeting vulnerable people.

"Some of the victims targeted had learning disabilities and physical disabilities," Contant told reporters. "In all cases, the victims were simply looking for some companionship and instead they were deceived for financial gain. Not only does this have a financial impact on the victims, but it also has a huge emotional impact."

Jackson Luu, 20, of Toronto, faces 11 counts of theft, 13 counts of Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, and 15 counts of unauthorized use of credit card data in connection with the case.

Lead photo by

Toronto Police Service

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